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Effects of habitat on settlement, growth, and postsettlement survival of Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua)
Tupper, M.; Boutilier, R.G. (1995). Effects of habitat on settlement, growth, and postsettlement survival of Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) . Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 52(9): 1834-1841. hdl.handle.net/10.1139/f95-176
In: Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences = Journal canadien des sciences halieutiques et aquatiques. National Research Council Canada: Ottawa. ISSN 0706-652X, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keywords
    Survival; Gadus morhua Linnaeus, 1758 [WoRMS]; ANW, Canada, Nova Scotia, St. Margaret's Bay [Marine Regions]; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Tupper, M.
  • Boutilier, R.G.

Abstract
    Settlement and growth of age 0+ cod were monitored using snorkel and self-contained underwater breathing apparatus (SCUBA) in four distinct habitat types (sand, seagrass, cobble, and rock reef) in St. Margaret's Bay, Nova Scotia. Newly settled cod were marked with acrylic dye, allowing repeated visual length estimates of individual fish. Settlement of cod did not differ between habitat types, but postsettlement survival and subsequent juvenile densities were higher in more structurally complex habitats. These differences appear to be due to increased shelter availability and decreased predator efficiency in structurally complex habitats. Growth rate was highest in seagrass beds, while the efficiency of cod predators was lowest and cod survival was highest on rocky reefs and cobble bottoms. Thus, trade-offs occur between energy gain and predation risk. In St. Margaret's Bay, the population structure of Atlantic cod may be less influenced by patterns of larval supply than by postsettlement processes such as habitat-specific growth and mortality.

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